Sunday, December 16, 2018


  • Monday, Oct. 8, 2018
Ikegami sees growing interest in HDR TV production
Ikegami's HDK-73 camera
NEUSS, Germany -- 

Ikegami, a provider of advanced cameras and production equipment for television content producers and broadcasters, reports rapidly growing interest in high dynamic range production (HDR) equipment among delegates attending the recently wrapped 2018 International Broadcasting Convention. Held in Amsterdam every September, IBC is Europe’s largest annual broadcast trade show. The event this year attracted 1,700 exhibiting companies and 55,884 registered attendees.

“Broadcast technology is advancing on several fronts, not least in Japan where the world’s first 8K Hi-Vision television channel is scheduled to commence in December,” commented Michael Lätzsch, broadcast and professional video division manager at Ikegami Electronics (Europe) GmbH.

“Of more immediate interest to content producers and television network owners at IBC was the increasing number of HDR-compatible domestic television receivers now available to consumers. HDR offers a very impressive improvement in picture quality compared with traditional TV displays, capturing much higher contrast images while at the same time retaining picture detail at every level from dark shade through to bright highlights. These improvements are particularly impressive during outside-broadcast coverage of real-world events such as open-air sports or indoor stage productions.”

Lätzsch added, “The transition from standard dynamic range (SDR) to HDR broadcasting will take several years but it was evident that many broadcasters are keen to adopt an HDR standard that will at the same time retain compatibility with the large existing population of SDR television displays. Two of the world’s largest broadcasters, the BBC in Britain and NHK in Japan, have cooperated on the development of the HLG (hybrid log gamma) standard which offers exactly that compatibility and at the same time improves the pictures delivered to SDR sets. HLG is being adopted by a growing number of major manufacturers and is fully supported by Ikegami.”

Ikegami demonstrated two HDR-compatible dockable cameras at IBC 2018: the 1080p HDK-99 and the HDK-73. Both are full high definition 1920 x 1080 pixel resolution models with three CMOS imagers and full digital processing. Each model allows the full dynamic range to be captured within a single exposure setting, eliminating the need to adjust the optical aperture or imaging sensitivity in mid shot. The difference in picture quality is breathtaking when seen on HDR-compatible displays such as the new HQLM-3125X broadcast production monitor.

Ikegami also showcased the new HQLM-3125X HDR broadcast master monitor. This incorporates a 4,096×2,160 pixel 10-bit resolution LED-backlit double-LCD panel with a 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio and a panel brightness of 1,000 candela per square meter. Fully compliant with BT.2020 wide color gamut, the HQLM-3125X incorporates single-channel 12G-SDI x 2, 3G-SDI × 5, 3G/HD-SDI and HDMI inputs as standard features. Square-division and two-sample interleave sources can be connected to the monitor via 3G-SDI × 4.  Viewing angle for critical image evaluation is a wide 178 degrees (horizontal/vertical). In addition to its picture monitoring role, the HQLM-3125X can operate as a waveform monitor and vectorscope. It can also display vertical-interval timecode, eight channel SDI-embedded audio level and closed-caption subtitles.

In the same series, the new Ikegami HQLM-1720WR is a compact UHD HDR monitor equipped with two 12G-SDI input channels as standard for efficient configuration with 4K equipment such as cameras and switchers. 3G-SDI, HD-SDI and HDMI inputs are also provided as standard. The HQLM-1720WR employs a 16.5 inch 3840×2160 pixel UHD LCD panel using LED backlight and can reproduce high resolution 4K and 2K images. Weight is just 9.5 kg.

Supplementing Ikegami’s HDR demonstrations at IBC2018 was a display by Hochschule RheinMain (University of Applied Sciences, Wiesbaden Rüsselsheim) promoting HDR to SDR downconversion. The Enhanced Video Imaging project centers on an automatic process which detects and brights dark sections of video while at the same time retrieving the detail in over-exposed sections. EVI is designed to produce better images easily and economically but optimizing lighting balance and exposure as well as correcting hue and saturation.

  • Thursday, Oct. 4, 2018
Shotoku USA to showcase robotic solutions at NAB Show NY
Shotoku's TG27 small lightweight head

Shotoku USA, the North American operation of Shotoku Broadcast Systems--an international manufacturer of advanced camera support products--is returning to the NAB Show NY. The manufacturer will showcase its range of robotic pan/tilt heads and height drives at the show in Booth N743.

Shotoku USA’s robotic support specialist Matt Servis will be on hand to demonstrate some of the most popular pan and tilt heads from the company’s full range of robotically controlled configurations, as well as discuss any aspect of the system, from initial design and specification through installation, commissioning and U.S.-based after sales service.

Shotoku’s robotic pan/tilt head series will be represented by the TG-18 that combines high-accuracy, smooth movement, silent operation and high payload with a full manual override capability. The TG-18 will be joined by the small, lightweight TG-27 head, ideal for parliaments, legislatures and small TV studios.

The company will also show its height drive capabilities via the cost-effective Ti-11 fully integrated elevating column for robotic applications such as weather studios, news-desks and other open-area camera positions where manual operation is not a primary requirement.

  • Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2018
TV Academy unveils winners of 70th Engineering Emmy Awards
Wendy Aylsworth speaks at last year's Engineering Emmy Awards ceremony. This year she is the recipient of the Charles F. Jenkins Lifetime Achievement Award.

The Television Academy has announced the recipients of the 70th Engineering Emmy® Awards honoring an individual, company or organization for developments in broadcast technology. Kirsten Vangsness, star of the CBS drama Criminal Minds, returns to host the awards for the third consecutive year on Wednesday, Oct. 24, at the JW Marriott Hotel, Los Angeles, at L.A. LIVE. 

The following is a list of awards to be presented:

The Charles F. Jenkins Lifetime Achievement Award
Honors a living individual whose ongoing contributions have significantly affected the state of television technology and engineering.
Recipient: Wendy Aylsworth
Wendy Aylsworth’s contributions to content engineering are countless. She is an innovative and award-winning entertainment technology executive with a respected career in emerging technologies, strategic planning, entertainment ecosystems, joint ventures, global facilities management, digital-content production and distribution, and R&D design implementation. A renowned speaker, team leader and board member of many industry consortia, technical advisory groups and standards bodies, Aylsworth spent more than two decades with Warner Bros. Studios, ultimately as their senior vice president, technology, corporate technical operations. Earlier in her career, at The Walt Disney Company she directed technology support for the feature animation division as well as software development for theme park attractions worldwide. Aylsworth is a past president of the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers and is a past chair of the Television Academy’s Engineering Emmy Awards committee. She currently serves as the CEO of Walden Pond and president of UltraViolet.
The Philo T. Farnsworth Corporate Achievement Award
Honors an agency, company or institution whose contributions over time have substantially impacted television technology and engineering.
Recipient: Avid
Avid is a leading technology provider, empowering aspiring artists, creative professionals, production teams and media enterprises to create, manage and monetize television programs, films and other media. Upon its founding 30 years ago, Avid broke new ground by reimagining and restructuring how television and film content was created with its revolutionary non-linear editor, which was the first to digitize video. Since then, Avid has grown its commitment to innovation by delivering products that accelerate the entire content ecosystem and connect people everywhere through media. With millions of users and thousands of media companies worldwide relying on the company’s innovative technology and collaborative tools, Avid makes it possible for participants across media to tell stories and report news that entertains, informs and enlightens the world.
Engineering Emmys
Presented to an individual, company or organization for engineering developments that considerably improve existing methods or innovations that materially affect the transmission, recording or reception of television.

This year’s five Engineering Emmy recipients are:

Recipient: Artemis Digital Director’s Viewfinder
Artemis Director’s Viewfinder is software for mobile devices that enables filmmakers to accurately pre-visualize shots with specific cameras and lenses before they are physically available. Replacing the traditional optical director’s viewfinder with intuitive digital tools, Artemis assists the user in creating storyboard images or videos, adding frame-lines, using virtual stand-ins, and experiment with color grading and so on. The sharing of images, notes and metadata gathered using Artemis enhances the communication between the different filmmaking disciplines, leading to increased creative control and production efficiency. Consequently, Artemis Director’s Viewfinder has become an industry standard tool.

Recipient: cineSync Review and Approval
cineSync has revolutionized the way in which television shows can be pitched, produced and delivered by opening the doors to seamless international collaboration. cineSync users can remotely review and annotate on high-resolution, high-frame-rate video with other participants in any location. Collaborators view the exact same frame at the same time on a platform that delivers the high-level security features of watermarking, guest authentication and encryption that production studios today demand.

Recipient: Codex Recording Platform and Capture Media
As television standards have evolved from standard definition recording to high definition, and now to high-dynamic range at 4K resolution and high frame rates, Codex’s technology for recording uncompressed RAW digital negatives allows digital storytellers to capture all the detail required for the highest quality final product. Codex has proven itself an essential industry game-changer. 

Recipient: Blue Mix-Fi Headphones
Blue Mix-Fi headphones enable users to produce mixes that translate accurately from headphone to near field monitors to the wall and beyond. The Mix-Fi design allows for independent pre-mixing on loud-mix stages and prevents ear fatigue by exposing details without the need to boost volume levels. Thanks to its unique performance and accuracy, Mix-Fi has been widely adopted by re-recording and production mixers, supervising sound editors, sound designers and music editors.

Recipient: PRG GroundControl™ Followspot
PRG’s introduction of the PRG GroundControl™ Followspot System has made a major impact on safe working conditions. Working from the stage floor and via fiber optic cable, operators direct a high-output, automated luminaire. The followspot’s onboard HD camera, outfitted with optical zoom and night vision capacity, provides set designers and lighting directors efficiencies in overall rig weight, reduction in space usage (including “seat kills”) and increased flexibility for camera placements. Designers now have total creative freedom to put followspots in previously impractical places, avoid complex rigging and place operators on the floor. The PRG GroundControl Followspot System has become an essential lighting asset for the wide variety of studio and remote locations used by awards, reality and concert programs.

Engineering Plaque
The Engineering Plaque honors achievements that exhibit a high level of engineering and are important to the progress of the industry. The Engineering Plaque is a positive recognition of engineering achievements on a different level of technology and overall industry importance than the Engineering Emmy.

Recipient: CATS Cam
CATS Cam is a unique application of video technology that gives wildlife filmmakers an unparalleled ability to obtain footage from an animal’s point of view without disturbing its natural behavior. Capable of recording up to 36 hours of image and sound on a multisensory-controlled video camera with maximum 4K resolution, CATS Cam can be programmed to record in different lighting situations, including infrared for nocturnal shoots. CATS Cam has resulted in an extraordinary level of access and understanding of the natural world for scientists and viewing audiences alike.

  • Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2018
Blackmagic Design joins Netflix Post Technology Alliance
FREMONT, Calif. -- 

Blackmagic Design has joined the new Netflix Post Technology Alliance. Additionally, Blackmagic’s professional editing, visual effects, motion graphics, color correction and audio post production DaVinci Resolve software was chosen for three of the alliance’s four technology categories: “Color Grading,” “Editorial” and “IMF & Media Encoding.” Furthermore Blackmagic Design’s URSA Mini 4.6K and URSA Mini Pro were also chosen in the alliance’s “Camera” category.

The Post Technology Alliance is a program for manufacturers of products that generate or manage any kind of sound data, image data, or metadata from production through post. The alliance is aimed at bringing together industry leaders committed to work closely with Netflix to innovate production workflows and support creatives globally.

To earn the ability to use the Post Technology Alliance certified logo, products must comply with current Netflix delivery specifications, and commit to future technical innovation and timely problem resolution. By being chosen by Netflix for alliance categories, filmmakers are assured the products meet a very high mark of quality, service and support.

DaVinci Resolve is used by post professionals all over the world, and has already been used for a huge number of films and TV programs shown on Netflix, including a number of hit Netflix originals such as “Daredevil,” “She’s Gotta Have It” and ”The Ranch.”

“Professionals creating films and episodic shows for Netflix have to focus on creativity, quality and being able to launch globally in multiple formats. So having a post process that is efficient, easy to use and always improving is essential. We are honored Netflix sees that DaVinci Resolve brings that in each of the software categories of the Post Technology Alliance,” said Grant Petty, CEO, Blackmagic Design.

“At Netflix, empowering our creative partners is incredibly important, and the Post Technology Alliance will build a more seamless experience from production through post-production,” said Chris Fetner, director of post partnerships & integrations at Netflix. “Products that bear the logo are committed to better interoperability and faster innovation cycles, which will allow artists to focus their energy on what matters most—the storytelling.”

  • Monday, Oct. 1, 2018
Fujinon Cabrio 20-120mm zoom now available sans servo
A camera outfitted with the Fujinon XK6x20 zoom

The Optical Devices Division of FUJIFILM will introduce a new version of its popular FUJINON XK6x20 zoom (better known as the Cabrio 20-120mm) without the servo drive motor. The Cabrio 20-120mm without drive can be operated as a fully manual, parfocal, cinema zoom lens.

The Cabrio 20-120mm is available with or without an attached servo unit. The servo drive on other Cabrio Series lenses is interchangeable on the 20-120mm, if the 20-120 is purchased without a drive unit.

“Based on the success of our Cabrio series, many of our customers already have Cabrio drive units on other lenses,” said Thomas Fletcher, director of marketing, FUJIFILM Optical Devices Division. “The 20-120mm Cabrio has an optimal focal range for a variety of shooting styles and is the entry point lens in the series. If purchased without the drive unit, customers still get the incredible optical and mechanical quality of a Cabrio - at an exceptional price.”

Designed to be convertible between the video production and cinema markets, the Cabrio 20-120 features a flat T3.5 from end-to-end, with no ramping. It covers a S35-sized sensor (Super 35 format). Without the servo drive, it can easily accept industry-standard cine motors and matte boxes.

Just as third party manufacturers developed accessories for the FUJINON MK lenses, camera and lens support providers are offering solutions to benefit users of the Cabrio 20-120mm without a servo. Among them, Chrosziel and Heden have designed lighter weight servo zoom motor solutions for the 20-120mm. “In reality TV, camera operators often need to hold the camera for 8-10 hours a day. Saving a 20% of the weight of the lens is a big deal to an operator,” explained Fletcher. “These lightweight third-party drives integrate seamlessly with Sony’s FS series zoom controllable hand grip.”

On the mount side, Duclos Lenses and IBE (Germany) offer EF mount and multi-mount kits for the 20-120mm.

The Cabrio 20-120mm is fit with a nine-blade iris to capture the most natural looking imagery and most beautiful bokeh possible. The zoom’s barrel markings are luminous for visibility in dark shooting situations, and distances are listed in feet or meters.

The 20-120mm zoom without an attached servo unit is available for a suggested list price of $12,000.

  • Friday, Sep. 28, 2018
Motion Picture Academy's Science and Tech Council adds 6 members

David Ayer, Rod Bogart, Theo Gluck, Leslie Iwerks, Colette Mullenhoff and Jeff Taylor have accepted invitations to join the Science and Technology Council of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, bringing the Council’s 2018–2019 membership roster to 25.

Ayer is a director, producer and screenwriter whose credits include “Bright,” “Suicide Squad,” “Fury,” “Sabotage,” “End of Watch,” “Street Kings” and “Harsh Times.” He also wrote screenplays for several acclaimed features, including “S.W.A.T.,” “Dark Blue,” “Training Day,” “The Fast and the Furious” and “U-571.” Ayer is the co-founder of the independent studio Cedar Park Entertainment. He became a member of the Academy’s Directors Branch in 2017.

Bogart is an imaging science technologist who has worked for such companies as Industrial Light & Magic, Pixar and HBO. At ILM, he was instrumental in the design, implementation and deployment of the industry standard OpenEXR image format, which is at the core of ACES (Academy Color Encoding System). As the lead color scientist at Pixar, he pioneered file-based workflows with Pixar’s image mastering team and contributed to the design of the system that became the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers Interoperable Master Format (SMPTE IMF). Bogart is a member of the Academy’s Visual Effects Branch, SMPTE and the Visual Effects Society (VES).

A 28-year veteran with Walt Disney Studios, Gluck is the director of library restoration and preservation. Since 2004, he has guided the studio’s restoration program and coordinated the digitization and preservation of a significant portion of the nitrate negatives on the studio’s classic animated features and shorts. During his tenure at Disney, he was part of the post-production team for Disney Character Voices International, and prior to that was the manager of film operations for Buena Vista Pictures Distribution. Gluck is an Academy Member-at-Large and serves on Science and Technology Council’s committees for technology history and education and public programs.

Director-producer Iwerks earned an Oscar® nomination for the documentary short “Recycled Life” and an Emmy® nomination for “The Pixar Story.” For more than a decade, she has produced, directed and edited feature and short documentaries, television specials, tributes, corporate films and digital content. Other credits include “Citizen Hearst,” “Industrial Light & Magic: Creating the Impossible,” “The Hand behind the Mouse – The Ub Iwerks Story,” and such environmental and social issue documentaries as “Pipe Dreams” and “Downstream.” She is a member of the Academy’s Documentary Branch, the Producers Guild of America and the International Documentary Association.

Mullenhoff is a research and development engineer at Industrial Light & Magic. In 2014, she was recognized with an Academy Technical Achievement Award for her contributions to the ILM Shape Sculpting System. Her software has been used in the production of numerous films, including “Ready Player One,” “Transformers: Dark of the Moon” and “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End.” She became a member of the Academy’s Visual Effects Branch in 2017.

Taylor is chief engineer of post production at Universal Studios, where he invented MediaSeal, serving as the product director and receiving three additional patents. He has designed numerous multi-audio-format re-recording stages (Atmos, DTS-X, IMAX), ADR and Foley rooms, screening theaters and Universal’s BluWave Audio facility. In his 38-year career, he also worked for The Droid Works, a division of Lucasfilm Ltd., where he wrote software for and trained editors on the EditDroid picture editing system; consulted on the digital technology transformation of the animation department at Walt Disney Pictures Animation Group; and was an early pioneer of the SDDS system at Sony Pictures. Taylor is a member of the Academy’s Sound Branch, Audio Engineering Society (AES), SMPTE and the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.

The Council co-chairs for 2018–2019 are Wendy Aylsworth and Visual Effects Branch governor Craig Barron.

The Council’s 17 other returning members are Academy president John Bailey, Nafees Bin Zafar, Maryann Brandon, Rob Bredow, Annie Chang, Bill Corso, Douglas Greenfield, Rob Hummel, Andrea Kalas, Academy governor John Knoll, Ai-Ling Lee, Beverly Pasterczyk, Cary Phillips, Douglas Roble, Leon Silverman, Academy governor Michael Tronick and Steve Yedlin.

Established in 2003 by the Academy’s Board of Governors, the Science and Technology Council provides a forum for the exchange of information, promotes cooperation among diverse technological interests within the industry, sponsors publications, fosters educational activities, and preserves the history of the science and technology of motion pictures.

  • Thursday, Sep. 27, 2018
Asim Saeed joins Ikegami Electronics as business development manager
Asim Saeed
NEUSS, Germany -- 

Ikegami, a supplier of advanced cameras and production equipment for television content producers and broadcasters, has added Asim Saeed to its sales and support team as business development manager. Reporting to Ikegami Europe president Kenzo Ishizuka, Saeed will promote the full Ikegami range of broadcast and medical products to existing and potential customers.

“With over 70 years of experience in high-end image capture, processing and display, Ikegami is a highly respected brand with proven capabilities in terms of production quality, robustness and technical innovation,” Saeed commented. “It is a great opportunity to be joining the team at a time when the television industry is advancing into new technologies such as high dynamic range image capture and display, higher resolution standards such as 4K and 8K, and the many new production methods made possible by IP-based equipment control and signal distribution.”

Graduating with an MBA degree, Saeed joined a UAE-based system integrator in 2000 as a sales executive, responsible for Canon’s broadcast lens throughout the Middle East. He was promoted in 2006 to sales manager and from 2014 onwards to general manager. During that time, he successfully extended the company’s operations into new products and solutions.

  • Thursday, Sep. 27, 2018
ARRI and Angelbird introduce CFast 2.0 memory card
ARRI's CFast 2.0 card by Angelbird
MUNICH, Germany -- 

ARRI is introducing the ARRI Edition AV PRO AR 256 CFast 2.0 card by Angelbird. The card has been designed and certified for use in the ARRI ALEXA Mini and AMIRA camera systems and can be used for ProRes and MXF/ARRIRAW recording.

ARRI has worked closely with Angelbird Technologies GmbH, a high-tech company based in Vorarlberg, Austria. Angelbird is no stranger to film production, and some of their gear can be found at ARRI Rental European locations. 

“Many of the CFast cards we tested delivered good results, but it usually takes the manufacturers a few attempts to stabilize their performance for high data-rate write patterns,” said Oliver Temmler, product manager for storage media at the ARRI headquarters in Munich, Germany. “Angelbird really stood out—they listened to us closely and quickly determined which parameters they had to tweak.”

The Angelbird team developed an ARRI-specific card that uses a combination of thermally conductive material and so-called underfill, to provide superior heat dissipation from the chips, and to secure the electronic components against mechanical damage.

The result is a rock-solid 256 GB CFast 2.0 card, with super-stable recording performance all the way across the storage space, making it the perfect addition to an ALEXA Mini or AMIRA camera setup.

The ARRI Edition AV PRO AR 256 memory card is available from ARRI and other sales channels offering ARRI products.

  • Monday, Sep. 24, 2018
Eclair, Samsung team to bring Onyx Cinema LED technology to European filmmakers, distributors

Eclair, which provides content services for the motion picture and TV industries, has announced an agreement with Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. for the installation of the Onyx Cinema LED solution in its facilities located in Paris-Vanves. Eclair will be among the first to provide professional services specifically tailored for the Onyx Cinema LED--contrast ratio of 1 000 000:1, color grading with true zero nit black, and EclairColor DCP mastering–-to European filmmakers, producers and distributors beginning in November.

“After announcing earlier this year the successful integration of our EclairColor HDR solution with the Onyx Cinema LED, we are delighted to expand our collaboration with Samsung to offer moviegoers the best ever cinematic experience,” said Pascal Mogavero, Eclair’s sr. VP. “Eclair is proud to be the first lab in Europe and the second in the world to be equipped with this new emissive technology, delivering the highest levels of visual quality and technical performance. The permanent quest for innovation, including HDR, has been part of our DNA since our founding, and we are renowned for our expertise and creative value brought to any projects from feature-length films to TV series. The successful implementation of Samsung’s promising cinema LED technology marks a new milestone for us.”

“Contributing to the future of technology through content creation and mastering services with this type of disruptive emissive technology strengthens our services offer vis-à-vis the European creative community,” commented Anne Feret, Eclair’s VP, postproduction and restoration divisions. “We are now able to produce ultra-sharp 4K resolution content--in scope and flat formats--with peak brightness levels nearly 10 times greater than the normal cinema standard. Taking full advantage of the Onyx’s capabilities--EclairColor HDR DCP, deep blacks, unparalleled image uniformity and absence of distortion--makes content come alive with unparalleled realism.”

“We are elated to be partnering with Eclair`s Paris-Vanves facility to bring the Onyx Cinema Screen to Europe,” said Seog-gi Kim, executive VP, visual display business at Samsung Electronics. “Samsung expects the demand for Onyx to increase in the European market, with its ultra-sharp 4K resolution and peak brightness level delivering a one-of-a-kind viewing experience. Samsung also anticipates the Onyx will change the filmmaking industry with higher quality, true-to-life visual content presented on this innovative screen.”

CinemaNext, Eclair’s sister company dedicated to cinema exhibition services in North America, Europe, the Middle East and Africa, will equip the Paris-Vanves facility with Onyx Cinema LED technology thanks to a seamless installation and high-precision calibration. The auditorium features a 5.2-meter screen with a 3D-capable multiple-LED display, 18 luxury seats, 7.1 audio technology from Harman’s JBL, and a full DaVinci Resolve 15 color-grading suite. The LED screen structure is
manufactured by CinemaNext’s Valencia (Spain) office.

  • Tuesday, Sep. 18, 2018
Foundry powers up Mari with mirror projection features
Mari 4.2

Creative software developer Foundry has launched Mari 4.2, introducing the latest installment of the flagship 3D painting and texturing tool. The update introduces highly-requested mirror projection features that dramatically enhance artist efficiency, accuracy and creative control.

Mirror projection brings simultaneous, symmetrical painting workflows to Mari, without the need for specialized UV layouts. Previously, painting the same designs on both sides of a symmetrically formed model required a considerable amount of asset preparation with a lot of repetitive actions. Now, artists can paint on one side of a mirror plane while Mari projects the same paint to the other side of the mirror plane, dramatically increasing efficiency.

The feature comes with mirror masking, which prevents secondary projected paint overlapping across the mirror plane, ensuring the paint meets at the mirror plane with a perfectly reflected edge. The masked side of the mirror plane can change automatically based on the artist’s view, or be locked to one side.

Additionally, the mirror plane can now be locked onto an object or locator, so that the reflected edge of the mirror projection can be manipulated to the best symmetrical position and orientation. This gives artists full freedom on where the symmetrical paint will fall, without any prep in other applications beforehand, increasing their efficiency and creative control.

This is the second major Mari update in 2018. The next feature release, which Foundry announced at SIGGRAPH 2018 in Vancouver, will feature the debut of the Mari Material System. The update, which will ensure Mari can utilize any texture driven material data in a material painting workflow, will be rolled out in phases to ensure users have access to the latest components as soon as they are developed.

Rory Woodford, product manager at Foundry, commented: “We are constantly listening to our users and innovating rapidly to meet their needs. Mirrored projection is a feature that our users have been requesting for a long time. Delivering it within its own powerful workflow will give artists complete creative control and make the process far more efficient. The mirror projection in this update is live and simultaneous, and users will see what a dramatic impact this has in enabling them to deliver high-quality work at speed.”

Jens Kafitz, creator of the Mari Extension Pack, Grid VFX, commented: “Foundry definitely went all out on the new symmetry painting. Even the ability to freely place the symmetry plane is included, making this a really versatile feature.”

Adam Goldstein, lead texture artist on Blade Runner 2049 at Framestore, said: “I used Mari on everything. It really is our main workhorse in the texturing department. It’s the only package that lets you paint on such enormous heaps of geometry without lag. If you’re in the Montreal Framestore texture team, 99% of the time you’re using Mari.”

Mari 4.2 has gone live and will be available for purchase--alongside full release details--on Foundry’s website and via accredited resellers. 

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